Lawrence Taylor (born February 4, 1959) is a retired Hall of Fame American football player, who played his entire professional career as linebacker for the NFL's New York Giants. Taylor, who is widely considered to be one of the greatest defensive players of all time, won a record three Defensive Player of the Year awards and was named league MVP in 1986.
- I guess that I'm just a plain wild dude.
- I used to always say when I went on the football field, 'You know I'm the best player out here on this field.' Is that being cocky? Maybe it is.
- There are a lot of people who can make tackles, but I always seemed to look for the big play. The big play got noticed, the big play was the one that changed the game...I have always wanted to be the one who made those plays.
- I don't worry too much about the choices I've made. When my days are over I'll have to answer for everything I've done. I don't grieve in any way about bad consequences for things I've done in my life.
- —in 1999 before he was inducted in the Hall of Fame.
- It's not a moment I want to remember, or see again.
- The demons will always be there, Always. But you know, (hard breath) you can always fight demons.
- —on his drug addiction problems.
- Let's go out there like a bunch of crazed dogs and have some fun.
- I had gotten really bad. I mean my place was almost like a crack house.
- Lawrence Taylor, defensively, has had as big an impact as any player I've ever seen. He changed the way defense is played, the way pass-rushing is played, the way linebackers play and the way offenses block linebackers.
- As a freshman playing on special teams, he'd jump a good six or seven feet in the air to block a punt, then land on the back of his neck. He was reckless, just reckless.
- —North Carolina assistant coach Bobby Cale.
- In 30 or 40 years, I'm going to take out the tapes and show them to my grandkids. To show them I really played against Lawrence Taylor. The greatest. (He was then asked what he will tell his grandkids) That he was everything they said he was.
- You saw hunger. Some guys were great at playing their position but didn't have that feeling inside and that was something that L.T. had with him every down of every game and he never lost it.
- All I can say about Lawrence Taylor is that he's the best defensive football player I've seen. I've said many times he's the best player I've seen in my era defensively. Everyone else is a pretender.
- I think that he was the greatest football player that I ever stepped on the field against. Nobody dictated what you could do offensively like LT.
- He is the Michael Jordan of football.
- A transformation would take place when he'd put on his uniform. He would be transformed into this homicidal maniac.
- —George Martin
- We had to try in some way have a special game plan just for Lawrence Taylor. Now you didn't do that very often in this league but I think he's one person that we learned the lesson the hard way. We lost ball games.
- I mean everything you did (on offense) was predicated to where he was and what he was doing.
- Taylor is the best college linebacker I've ever seen. Sure, I saw Dick Butkus play. There's no doubt in my mind about Taylor. He's bigger and stronger than Butkus was. On the blitz, he's devastating.
- Whitley, David. L.T. was reckless and magnificent, espn.com, accessed April 2, 2007.
- Taylor made: 'L.T.' has a date with Canton, destiny, sportsillustrated.cnn.com, accessed January 29, 2007.
- The Michael Jordan of Football, sportsillustrated.cnn.com, accessed April 2, 2007.
- Does LT's conduct make him Hall of Fame worthy?, sportsillustrated.cnn.com, accessed April 2, 2007.
- L.T. Over The Edge: Former Hall Of Famer Reveals Shocking Stories From His Playing Days, cbsnews.com, accessed January 29, 2007.
- Sansevere, Bob. Giants' L.T.: His mean streaks revolutionized NFL, made him the best., Knight Ridder/Tribune News Service, January 8, 1994, accessed February 17, 2007.